Library filed under Impact on Wildlife from Ontario
While it was a celebration toasted with champagne, officials unveiling the Niagara Region Wind Farm still felt the need to defend their cause.
DRESDEN - Theo Heuvelmans pulls no punches when it comes to his opinion about industrial wind turbines – he doesn't like them.
“The Tribunal decision has made it clear that this wind power project was never about protecting the environment,” said Jane Wilson, president of Wind Concerns Ontario, the coalition of community groups concerned about wind power projects. “The wind power project was always about money. The citizens of Prince Edward County fought hard to protect the environment and wildlife against our own Ministry of the Environment.”
On Wednesday, April 26, the Environmental Review Tribunal finally issued their decision on the Remedy phase of the hearing into the WPD 27 turbine project proposed for the south shore of the County. The decision on remedy comes after last year’s finding of serious and irreversible harm to Little Brown Bats and Blanding’s turtles in the main hearing of the Hirsch and APPEC appeals.
The partial sinking of a barge that was to be used in the construction of the Amherst Island wind energy project is reason enough to stop the project, a Prince Edward County environmental group says.
In essence, the tribunal ruled that whatever the benefits of renewable energy — and whatever a government’s policy interest in promoting it — they do not override the public interest in protecting against environmental harm. (Migratory birds, bats and monarch butterflies were also said to be at risk under the wind turbine proposal.)
When the stewards of our environment are arguing to kill threatened species to facilitate development, something's clearly out of balance.
Environmental activists have scored another victory against construction of wind turbines they say will do serious and irreversible harm to already endangered species. ...The panel upheld the appeal because of the risk of serious and irreversible harm to the Little Brown Bat and Blanding’s Turtle.
The Ontario Environmental Review Tribunal released this decision partially granting an appeal of the Province's decision to approve the White Pines wind energy facility. The panel upheld the appeal because of the risk of serious and irreversible harm to the Little Brown Bat and Blanding’s Turtle. The White Pines wind facility, as proposed, consists of 29 wind turbines with a nameplate capacity of 59.45 megawatts (MW). The Project will be located within the ward of South Marysburgh and a small portion of Athol, Prince Edward County. The background details of the case before the Tribunal are provided below. The full decision can be accessed by clicking the links on this page.
"Amherst has the largest breeding population of the at-risk short-eared owl in southern Ontario," Wise said. "During the winter, Amherst supports the largest concentration of owl species of anywhere in eastern North America as far as we know. "We are all for green energy, but not at the expense of nature."
“From the beginning several years ago, we were astounded that the Ministry of Natural Resources would issue a permit that allowed development of a site as important to species at risk as Ostrander Point,” said Myrna Wood, PECFN president. “Over the years we continually have reminded the Ministry of Environment and the Ministry of Natural Resources that their responsibility to protect species at risk was being ignored by allowing development at Ostrander Point.”
The Ontario Court of Appeal ruled on Monday that a 324-hectare, nine-turbine wind farm proposed for the south shore of Prince Edward County puts a population of endangered Blanding’s turtles at risk of dying out in that region’s wetland. The risk is posed not by the wind farm itself but by 5.4 kilometres of roads to and from the site.
The Ontario Court of Appeal has ruled that a proposed nine-turbine wind farm in Prince Edward County would cause “serious and irreversible harm” to the Blanding’s turtle, sending the case back to the Environmental Review Tribunal to determine an appropriate remedy.
Local anti-wind activists are questioning the use of Lambton County grasslands for Suncor's Cedar Point wind farm. Grassland habitats are home to bobolinks, pictured here, and eastern meadowlarks, a pair of bird species considered 'threatened' by the Ministry of Natural Resources.
Eric Gillespie, lawyer for the field naturalists, said his client is “expressing some concern” about parts of the ruling and is considering whether to take the divisional court ruling to Ontario Court of Appeal.
Jane Wilson of Wind Concerns Ontario discusses the Ontario government's push to remove environmental protections to erect wind turbines. Click the image below to view the video.
After hearing arguments from the Prince Edward County Field Naturalists club, the tribunal revoked the renewable energy permit that wind developer Gilead Power had previously been granted. Tuesday the wind power company, Gilead Power, and Ontario’s ministry of the environment were in divisional court to appeal the ruling.
But the vibrating hum from the turbines seemed to have intensified recently, she said. “Our birds became very aggressive. They were never like that. They were very docile.” ...During one period of about 14 days, they lost five birds. “We can’t sit and watch the rest of these birds die.”